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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  January 23, 2013 7:00pm-8:00pm PST

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my friend is making news tonight. he lost in the quarterfinals at the australian open in a match that brought out all her intensity. >> well, i recognize all that because of course last year we clashed ourselveses in a match of equal drama and tension in new york and she didn't take that defeat well.
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>> oh, come on! >> not a happy bunny then. take it from me, we don't want you any other way. keep showing that hunger, that desire, that passion to be the best. it's what makes you a great champion. remember if you want a rematch, think you can cope with the emotions it will bring out in you, i'm ready anytime. that's it for us tonight. "anderson cooper" starts now. piers, thanks. there's breaking news tonight. no shortage of compelling stories. there's the unwilling unwitting face of a hoax. this woman's face stolen, used in the strangest con game college football hass ever seen. later, we take you inside scientology. my interview with the man who has uncovered details no one else has. we begin with breaking news. a military story that could also seriously alter the political battlefield perhaps for decades
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to come. cnn has learned that tomorrow defense leon panetta will open the door to women serving in combat units. it won't happen all at once. there will be certain limitations. for the first time in long history of american armed forces, a big door will be opening. the decision comes with plenty of women fighting and dying overseas it's important to mention. at least 130 women have been killed in iraq and afghanistan. more than 800 wounded. in a moment we'll talk to a congresswoman and iraq war veteran and look at political consequences. we start at the pentagon with our chris lawrence. this is ground breaking stuff after women flying helicopters, combat medics, assigned to submarines, this is the last great barrier to come down. right? >> you're exactly right, anderson. you're talking about army infantry, marine recon units and even potentially special operations forces. this was sort of the big glass ceiling that had not been broken yet. you mentioned other ones.
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the army recently opened up special ops aviation, that women could be pilots and crew members on aviation flights, for special operations forces. but this potentially opens up nearly a quarter of a million jobs to women in the military. >> what's the time line on this? i mean, it doesn't happen all at once. >> no, it's not like tomorrow all these jobs are going to open all at once. some will open fairly quickly. the easiest ones to integrate where you've got a lot of women already sort of attached or working at a battalion level. those could be open in six to eight months. but some of the tougher ones, the special operations forces, certain elite infantry units, those may take years. and what the pentagon has got to do now is the individual commands have to start to assess when they may be able to make this change, and that really is the big catch there, anderson, that these commands can go through and look and say at some point we don't think we can feasibly integrate women without losing combat readiness.
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they can then go back to the secretary of defense and ask for an exemption to the rule. so ultimately, down the road, this may not apply to every single job in the military, and it's something that leon panetta's successor is going to have to make big decisions about going down the road. >> for some of these, would there be different physical standards? would they all the same physical standards? how would that work? >> all that's got to get worked out individually. so the marines will have to look at every job, every combat unit, and decide how they want to implement it. if you look at how the navy did submarines, what they did was they took a small group of women when they were still at the naval academy, brought them in as candidates. those women trained for a couple years, and just last year, and last few months, you started to see the first female submarine officers get on board their subs. after they get integrated, then the navy is going to bring in some enlisted women behind them and i'm told that's how they may work some of the process with certain elite units. >> chris lawrence, thanks. >> yep.
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>> joining me now, chief national correspondent john king, political consultant margaret hoover and wounded service person and illinois democratic congresswoman tammy duckworth. how do you feel about today's announcement? >> i was so pleased. because i think it's a great step forward for our military and our nation. this opens up a whole new population of americans who want to serve and want to defend this nation who now will be able to do it in combat jobs. >> john king, how much of this is about politics? >> first and foremost, it's something the president believes in, anderson. if you attach it to some other things he said he believes in and will push for in his second term, look at what we heard in just the last 48, 72 hours. women in combat. ground breaking language in his inauguration speech about gay rights. more talk of equal pay for women. the return to climate change and gun control. take all of those issues, what do they have in common? they fit the demographics of the obama coalition. how did he win? with college-educated women.
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with younger voters. with nonwhite voters. he's embracing if you will not only the politics but the policy priorities of his coalition. what else do they have in common? they put pressure, like a sharp thumb, on some key points in a republican coalition that this white house, frankly, thinks is ageing, is increasingly white and is fractured. >> and you're saying you think there's no doubt that that is part of this equation? >> without a doubt. if you heard speaker john boehner just the other day after the inaugural address saying the president is trying to annihilate the republican party. that's a strong word. but does this president see an opportunity? i'd be interested in the congresswoman's opinion. you can't find many democrats who think that president obama worries about the democratic party, 10, 15, 20 years down the road. but you will find a lot of democrats who say if you can turn the obama coalition into a democratic coalition, the democrats will have built in on the national stage what ronald reagan had for 20 years and republican party had after ronald reagan on the national stage. this coalition, if he can transfer it over, it spells trouble for the republicans. >> congresswoman, what do you
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think about what john king is saying? >> i'm not privy to the president's processes and how he came up with the decision. all i can tell you is women have been dying and fighting and bleeding for this nation in combat roles in iraq and afghanistan. they may not have had those jobs specifically other than aviation, my branch of service, but they've been fighting in combat and engaged in combat action. i think the last ten years of women serving in combat has finally pushed us to this point where the pentagon has finally realized, look, women have served ably and it's time we open up these folds. >> do you think the president is trying to box republicans into a corner? >> i don't know what the president is trying to do. all i can tell you is that i certainly, as a politician, supported this throughout my political career, but even beforehand, this is something that i've been supporting all along even when people said women aren't capable of doing it.
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yes, they are. they are capable of defending our country just as well as men. >> you don't want to say what's in the president's mind, but from a political standpoint, does it box republicans into a corner or make it difficult for republicans? >> anyone who would oppose this would have to answer to their constituency as to why they think women aren't capable of doing their jobs. i think american sons and daughters both want to fight, both want to defend this country and i think that what women have done in iraq and afghanistan, our military women, has proven that they are fully capable of doing this. >> margaret hoover, republican, what do you think? >> i would encourage republicans here to not be reactionary and to not take the political bait. the truth is it's exactly what representative duckworth said. women have been fighting in combat roles. i mean, there have been -- not only fighting in combat roles in the sense they are taking action direct combat and seeing engagement, seeing action, there are also some rules, like the female marine engagement troops in afghanistan, jobs female marines are doing that male marines simply can't do. they are seeing conflict and action as well. to be reactionary would be to
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defy the facts on the ground. >> but also just from a political standpoint, to john king's point, do you think this -- is politics involved here, that this is shoring up liberal coalition and also boxing republicans in? >> it's a perfect marriage of the reality of where the military is going and the coalition the president is trying to coalesce. it makes sense for him to do this and republicans shouldn't be reactionary about it. the thing republicans should care most about is what will keep the military the most effective and superior fighting force in the world, and if opening up to women and being realistic, women are seeing combat, they should be -- >> do you agree with john boehner that barack obama is trying to annihilate the republican party? >> i think he sees a splittered republican party and he's going for the jugular and any politician in that position would. >> so you think it's a smart move? >> i mean, it's certainly savvy. the republican party is in a bit of disarray right now and certainly don't have the upper hand the president does. so he's being wise tactically.
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>> is part of this payback for comments that mcconnell made about his top job being to make sure the president wasn't re-elected? >> well, i think part of it is. you could look at it that way. if you asked the president he would say he believes these things. i'm actually told after his inaugural address, his former chief of staff, now chicago mayor, rahm emanuel asked him where did that come from and why did you decide to give that speech with those points we talked about. the president said i decided to say things that i really believe in. he's a second-term president. he doesn't have to run for re-election. we can talk about these policies. you know, the president didn't do these things, he didn't do women in combat. he didn't lift a finger on climate change or push hard on immigration and gun control in his first term. so he's a second-term president who doesn't have to face voters and these are things he wants to bring front and center. how much will he follow-up? we'll see. they do believe, in the white house, anderson, pick up a demographics report, look at the demographics of this country, how they are changing, and the obama coalition from the last two elections, they believe if they can cement the loyalty of those voters in and part of that is acting on
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issues they most care about, these are issues that fit the obama coalition. if they can cement that in on a national scale, the republicans are in trouble. >> and margaret, you wouldgree the president believes this. it's not just politics. he believes in all of these things. >> i think so. i think he's sincere. i think he's earnest. i don't think there's anything insincere in saying that seneca falls, selma and stonewall. i think it's consistent with what he's stood for and it's politically convenient. >> fascinating days. appreciate you being with us. tammy duckworth, margaret hoover, john king. let us know what you think. we're talking about it on twitter. @andersoncooper. ahead tonight, her face belonged to manti te'o. the image of the perfect girlfriend. fictitious girlfriend we now know. and on a much more serious note, the murder of four americans in libya. secretary clinton's fiery day on capitol hill. >> with all due respect, the fact is we had four dead americans. was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk that decided to go out and kill americans. what difference at this point
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does it make? it's our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, senator.
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keeping them honest tonight.
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hillary clinton's long awaited accountability moment in the death of four americans in libya. ambassador christopher stevens, glen doherty, tyrone woods and shawn myth. their sacrifice deserves honest answers and meaningful action and not political posturing and evasive answers. so keeping them honest, are we getting honest answers to truly relevant questions and are security problems that caused four americans their lives being addressed? last month a state department accountability review board identified systemic short comings and failures of leadership prior to the killings. secretary clinton says she takes full responsibility. today on capitol hill lawmakers demanded accountability. >> i am troubled by what seems to be this administration's pattern of misleading the american people and failing to hold decisionmakers accountable. >> chris stevens knew more about libya than anyone else in our government did not see a direct threat of an attack of this nature and scale despite the overall trend of security problems that we faced and i
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have to add neither did the intelligence community. >> an emergency meeting was held and a cable sent out on august 16th by the ambassador himself warning what could happen and this cable went unnoticed by your office. >> it does cost money to pay for embassy security. >> since 2007, they have consistently requested greater funding for embassy construction and diplomatic security. with the exception of 2010 congress has consistently enacted less than was requested. >> we were misled that there were protests and something sprang out of that. >> with all due respect, the fact is we had four dead americans. was it because of a protest or guys out for a walk one night that decided to kill americans. what difference at this point does it make? it is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, senator. >> had i been president at the
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time and i found that you did not read the cables from benghazi, you did not read the cables from ambassador stevens, i would have relieved you of your post. i think it's inexcusable. >> you let the consulate become a death trap and that's national security malpractice. >> i have great confidence that the accountability review board did the job they were asked to do, made the recommendations that they thought were based on evidence, not on emotion. >> so there's no shortage of heat today as you just saw. keeping them honest, was there actually light? with us tonight is chief washington correspondent jake tapper and former bush security adviser fran townsend. she spent times with ambassador stevens back in august. so, jake, these kinds of hearings, it's very frustrating to watch them. it just seems it ends up being a lot of posturing and grandstanding. what did we learn today we didn't know already? >> well, certainly, there were a lot of questions that went unanswered and questions
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that were buried in paragraphs of speeches that members of congress gave that allowed secretary clinton to not answer them. there were a few things we learned today. one, i think i have never heard the state department officially confirm that weapons used in algeria, in that crisis, came from libya. it was long reported, it was suspected, but it had not been said by the secretary of state before. in terms of the politics of this, i think we learned that this remains a big issue among republican rank and file, and benghazi will continue to be an issue, but that republicans still have yet to find a way to pin down any of the obama administration officials for any tangible wrongdoings. >> fran, do you think it was a waste of time? >> i do think it was a waste of time. it was unfortunate. you've had on family members on your program and i imagine myself as a family member if i lost somebody watching this. look, it was a waste of time to ask secretary clinton about the talking points given to
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ambassador susan rice. >> and that's what -- they seemed to spend a lot of time on talking points given to susan rice. >> right. and yet when am bass -- when secretary clinton loses her temper in the senate hearing and says "what difference does it make whether this was resulted from a protest or guys that went out for a walk and decided to kill americans," the right comeback to that is it does matter. if you want to solve the problem, you have to understand what caused that. >> let's play the moment. where she got mad at senator johnson. >> again, we were misled that there were protests and then something sprang out of that. assault sprang out of that. but that was easily ascertained that was not the fact. the american people could have known that within days and they didn't know that. >> with all due respect, the fact is we had four dead americans. >> i understand -- >> was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night that decided they would go kill americans. what difference at this point does it make? it is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, senator. >> you were saying, fran, it does make a difference.
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>> it does make a difference. of course. because -- and she alludes to that at the very end of her answer there. in order to fix it, you have to understand where it came from. by the way, they didn't spend a whole lot of time asking her about the several attempts to attack that consulate and the attack on the british ambassador in benghazi prior to the 9/11 attack on our consulate. there were a series of things that if they wanted to get to the substance of this, and she took responsibility, but if you want ed to hold her accountable, you needed to ask substantive questions and they didn't do that. >> did it seem like they had done their homework? >> here's another -- secretary clinton said she did not read all of the cables that we're talking about the security situation. not one senator or one member of congress asked her if she got a roger channel cable from ambassador stevens. that is a special channel in which an ambassador posted
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overseas can communicate directly with the secretary of state on particularly sensitive matters. we don't know the answer to that question because, of course, nobody asked her that. >> do we know if that cable was sent? >> we don't know. my point is that members of congress were so busy posturing -- they had an opportunity to really ask her difficult questions and get straight answers and they didn't do that. >> jake, where do you think this leaves secretary clinton in terms of her legacy? does it have an impact on any career she may have in 2016 in terms of running for president? did it do damage today to her? >> i think that the quote of hers that you just played "what difference does it make at this point" is ready for a campaign commercial. whether it's from the biden for president campaign or the christi for president campaign, i don't know. i think that will be used against her and certainly it comes across as more glib than i think if she could go back and revise and extend those remarks she would have them as fran just alluded to.
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>> is it fair, fran, to attack secretary clinton, the administration, for not having brought some of these people to justice already? doesn't -- i mean, the flip side of that these things take time. do you think it's too much time? >> they do take time. secretary clinton was asked, she did mention fbi director bob mueller was in libya last week. the investigation is ongoing. didn't say much about -- other than we're working with the tunisian government. one suspect was released. >> they say he's under observation. >> they weren't ready to bring charges yet. you know, anderson, here's the problem. the bad guys understand just this. they are watching. there hasn't been anybody brought to justice. they understand very well the environment they are operating in. security services have melted away after the arab spring. borders are easy to cross. weapons are easily accessible. the bad guys have an advantage. the longer it takes to bring an investigation to a conclusion and hold people accountable suggests to the bad guys that they have a free operating environment and americans are at risk throughout that region. >> interesting. fran, appreciate it.
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jake tapper, thanks so much. >> thank you. another story we're covering tonight, diane o'meara learned from a reporter she was the face of manti te'o's fake girlfriend. her stolen image is at the center of this entire hoax that changed the way some people see the star linebacker. she joins me live ahead. and later, celebrities and scientology. a controversial new book explores the church's interest in hollywood. the author, lawrence wright, won a pulitzer prize for "the looming tower," his book about 9/11 and al qaeda. he joins me about his new book on scientology next. make it worth watching. introducing the 2013 lexus ls. an entirely new pursuit. introducing the 2013 lexus ls. you know it can be hard to lbreathe, and how that feels.e, copd includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. spiriva helps control my copd symptoms by keeping my airways open for 24 hours. plus, it reduces copd flare-ups.
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welcome back. 2013 has barely begun. it's possible that a more bizarre story could come along. but this story has set the bar pretty high. we know that lennay kekua, the love of te'o's life and died too young losing her life to leukemia the day that he lost his grandmother, we know that's not true. deadspin broke the story and the
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scam. tonight the star linebacker is talking. the full interview with katie couric airs tomorrow. in clips released by "good morning america" he admits to lying to the media after acknowledging his girlfriend was a hoax. he also defends his lies. listen. >> you stuck to the script. you knew that something was amiss, manti. >> correct. >> why? >> put yourself in my situation. this girl i committed myself to died on september 12th. now i get a phone call on december 6th saying she is alive and i'll be put on national tv two days later and they'll ask me the same question. what would you do? >> te'o is not the only one speak out tonight. as bizarre as this whole story is, for everyone else, for diane o'meara, her photo was
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used to create an online identity for lennay kekua. they say that ronaiah tuiasosopo masterminded the hoax. he's not talking publicly. thank you for being here. how are you holding up in all of this? >> it's hard. i try not to think too much about it because it's very twisted and very disturbing and at this point trying to do day by day. >> you know ronaiah tuiasosopo? >> right. he was a classmate of mine in high school. >> in high school. how long ago was that? >> i graduated in 2007. >> have you been in touch with him over the years? >> he never contacted me up until this past december. i never saw him. >> the first photograph, how did he get that photograph? where did he take that from? >> he contacted me through multiple messages on facebook saying that he and his cousin had been in a traumatic car accident and my attorney, mr.
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donahue, he brought papers today but he basically said that he's creating a slide show for his cousin who is waiting for his brain surgery and to help him out if i could send a photo of myself. you know, and ironically now, thinking back, i thought to myself, what's the difference between me taking a photo and holding up a sign versus him just taking a photo from my facebook profile? so it went as far as him sending a photo of his cousin -- >> this is the photo that he asked you to hold up a sign. >> right. >> and we now know that what was written on the sign related to the alleged dead girlfriend's twitter page. >> i had no idea at the time. i was told that this was more of a hash tag throughout the photo slide show and everyone else participating in the slide show was holding that sign. >> and there was another picture of you that -- did he take that from your facebook page? >> every other photo was taken from my facebook profile or my
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old myspace or mutual friends facebook profiles. >> what is -- to your memory, >> he always seemed upbeat guy. always smiling. very religious. >> were you close friends at all? >> no. i spoke with him probably two, three times in high school. as i mentioned, since then never heard from him or hung out with him, you know. even when he was contacting me on facebook, i was very hesitant to respond back but his urgency and his persistence was unavoidable. >> and has he -- he's now apologized to you? >> right. through the first couple of weeks of january he was still reaching out to me asking for more content, for more photos and videos and even as far as for me to send a video saying good luck on the 7th, which now obviously relates to the championship game that was on the 7th. obviously, i didn't give that
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content or any other photos or anything like that. but when he found out that this was all coming to surface through the deadspin article and everyone was kind of catching on, he reached out to me a day or two days before the story broke and relayed to me that he in fact was stalking my profile for five years, taking my photos and he created -- >> for five years he was doing this? >> he created this identity that was not me. it was this lennay kekua with my face on it. >> how does that feel emotionally? >> it's unnerving. it's very frustrating. even still when i see the photos and when i see how they've been exposed all over the media, it's hard. but, i mean, the fact is this doesn't just happen to me. granted, this is a very unique situation that involves mass media, but this happens every day. >> it happens to people all the time.
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>> yeah, which is the most devastating thing. >> we've got digital dashboard question from facebook. robert asks if manti would call you now to tell you how embarrassed he is about the situation, would you speak with him? >> you know, i don't know. i think i would just ask manti directly, if i had a chance to speak to him, i would directly ask him were you involved? as anybody else, i'm searching for answers as well. >> do you think he might be? >> you know, i'm not one to say because this is so confusing and twisted and i don't see the real motive behind this. i mean, this seems like it was carefully executed and planned over a course of two years. >> do you now change your facebook settings? i mean, do you -- >> well, that's the thing, i mean, i was doing everything i could to protect myself. my facebook was private. i was careful about going through each and every time line post when it switched to time line and changing all of the settings, making sure i knew what post was there and who was seeing it. clearly, that's not enough
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nowadays. >> what's your message to other young women out there? as you said -- i interviewed other young women that has happened to. >> right, and thabs the scary thing, is we keep hearing about these cases of identity being stolen in this extremely vulnerable way and nobody is doing anything about it. we just keep going along hoping, wishing that i hope that doesn't happen to me. i hope that's not my daughter. i hope that's not my friend or my girlfriend. we just kind of hope. and it's not enough. it's very unsatisfactory that we have literally no protection against the advancements of internet and social media. >> i'm sorry you have experienced this. i appreciate you talking about it. thank you very much. diane ma o'meara. coming up, another story about the church of scientology. a new book looks at the church's founder and interest in recruiting celebrities. the church is slamming the book saying it's full of inaccuracies. the writer is pulitzer prize author lawrence write who joins me ahead.
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later, bitter cold, that is turning buildings like this one in chicago into ice castles. just crazy. a case of winter being winter or something else going on? some answers ahead. ♪
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swift and furious is a fair way to describe the church of scientology's response to a new book by author lawrence wright. it's called "going clear." as the title suggests, it focuses on the founder and interest in recruiting celebrities and explores allegations of abuse. already in its second printing. this isn't the first time an author, journalist or former scientologist turned a lens on the church and it's not the first time scientology has tried to discredit the result and threatened legal action. we have reported on the church of scientology and felt those effects. you will hear from lawrence wright.
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the author of "going clear." first, background on how he got here. the church of scientology was founded by l. ron hubbard in 1954. its stated goals to help people "live in a civilization without insanity, without criminals and without war where the able can prosper and honest beings can have rights." members pay to take courses designed to help them work through issues from their past and reach a higher state of consciousness. to understand what's holding them back, church members are tested with a device called an "e" monitor that is used to monitor their feelings and reactions. hubbard died in 1986 and since then this man has been the leader. he, like hubbard before him, oversees a religious order inside the church. an order that is responsible for church management. called the sea organization. members of sea org sometimes wear naval-style uniforms. they dedicate their lives to the church, signing billion-year contracts, promising to remain in the church for many
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reincarnated lives to come. the church of scientology says it's opened churches around the globe. it claims that 10 million members worldwide, 6 million in the u.s. in 2009, then church spokesman tommy davis put it this way. >> he's responsible for the current renaissance the church is experiencing and the church has doubled in size in the last five years and has flourished under his leadership. >> the america religious identification survey, however, cites much lower numbers. according to a survey, the numbers dropped from 55,000 to 25,000 in the years from 2001 to 2008. the church is a famously vocal critic of psychiatry. opposing what it calls brutal and inhumane psychiatric treatments. but for most, this is how the public identifies with scientology, through high-profile believers. the church reaches out to
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well-known performers and caters to their need with a celebrity center in hollywood. kirstie alley and tom cruise. >> when you drive past an accident, it's not like anyone else. as you drive past, you know you have to do something about it because you know you're the only one who can really help. >> cruise is so close to the church leader that he asked him to be best man at his wedding. here is cruise praising the leader at a scientology event in 2007. >> i say to you, we are lucky to have you. thank you very much. >> in 2010, we met with many former sea org members, including tom cruise's former counselor or auditor in scientology parlance who says everything is not as it seems within the church leadership. >> go long. >> marty used to work directly under david miscavige and says there's a culture of violence within the leadership of the church. a culture encouraged by ma iscavige himself. >> he treats them like slaves in
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a slave camp and literally beats them down. >> it's a claim the church denies. they say that rathbun is a liar and out to destroy the church. the church spokesman in 2009 tommy davis says yes, there was violence in the church but he blames marty rathbun for it and others now making allegations against david miscavige. >> the allegations are untrue. there is nothing of the sort as they are describing. by mr. miscavige. >> david miscavige has never kicked somebody? >> absolutely not. >> never punched somebody? >> never, never, never. absolutely not. >> as cnn was preparing our 2010 report, the church provided us with large stacks of affidavits from current and former church members. one-time colleagues of the former scientologist, even ex-wives that remain in the leadership of the church. some interviewed with us to defend the church saying former husbands and co-workers are liars. >> i never saw one scratch. i never saw one bruise. i never saw one black eye. nothing. nor did he complain about anything personally. >> now pulitzer prize winning
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author lawrence write has written a book titled "going clear." scientology, hollywood and the prison of belief. he details the church's creation by its founder l. ron hubbard and explores the allegations of abuse. allegations the church continues to strongly deny and they created a website to refute the book chapter by chapter. well, we're making the church of scientology's response fully available at to find it, put the term "scientology" in the search in the upper right-hand corner. "going clear" is based on extensive interviews with former and current church members. lawrence wright talked to hundreds of people. i spoke to him earlier. why did you decide to write about scientology? >> i've always been interested in why people believe one thing rather than another. especially in this country, where you can believe anything you want. that's not true in a lot of places in the world. but we have this supermarket of religious beliefs. so why would you choose scientology, perhaps the most stigmatized religion in this country. >> what do you think it does for people?
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that's the thing i can't get to the bottom of. what does it give people? >> at the beginning level when you go in and get auditing, which is their form of therapy, a lot of people feel like they are helped. that's what draws people in. they ask, what is ruining your life? what is your ruin? if you say, well, it's my relationship or my profession or something, they say we have something that can help you. and sometimes that's true. >> is recruiting celebrities -- they have this celebrity center in hollywood. was that a conscious effort by the church and is that for pr reasons? >> absolutely. these are product endorsements. the church of scientology was created in los angeles. the celebrity center in hollywood, all of it with the design to take over the entertainment industry. there were people that they were actively recruiting. they were always looking for that ex-emmary figure that would
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represent scientology, and it would be a prominent member of the entertainment industry. >> they look at the origin myth of scientology or the origin story and people make fun of it. my belief is every religion has an origin story. if that's their origin story, fine. i've never really focused too much on that. i find the structure of the church interesting though. is there any other church that you know of that is structured like it in terms of paying to kind of move up through the hierarchy of the church. >> nothing like that comes to mind. it's very expensive. if you want to climb -- if you walk into the door of scientology today and you go all of the way to the top of the pyramid, half a million dollars or more just for -- you get the course work but then you're continually asked for money. >> the church is very upset about the book. they say, mr. wright showed the church he has no interest in the facts, only lies and exaggerations being fed to him
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by angry, bitter sources with agendas based on hatred and revenge. the result is a biased work. more fiction than fat. i should say they basically said the same thing about our reporting. then published an entire magazine devoted to attacking us and cnn and myself. >> i got one in "the new yorker" as well. i want to just say about that disclaimer from the church. first of all, you can only talk to the people that will talk to you. i asked repeatedly to talk to upper level executives including david miscavige, but not just him, and the opportunity was foreclosed to me. i spoke to more than 250 people, the majority of them current or former scientologists. so it's not just a small group of people. we're talking about more than 150 people. their stories are very damning. very similar in nature. >> there's a lot of people who were formerly in upper echelons of the church that talk about a culture of violence that they participated in. some admit they engaged in
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violent acts towards others in the church, but they also point fingers at david miscavige, the leader of the church, as someone that would leap across desks and hit people. >> it sounds bizarre. i had 12 people tell me that they had personally been beaten up by david miscavige and more than 20 witnesses to such events and these accounts are very similar. the hair-trigger response. a sudden jumping up and strangling people, beating people out of the blue, no idea what they've done and often times after that they are sent off to one of these re-education camps, sometimes for years. >> we heard tom cruise in the setup package saying that he drives by an accident and he knows that he's the only one, scientologists are the only one that can really help. what is that idea that somehow a scientologist is the only one who can help with a road accident? >> it's a laying on of hands. there's a contact assist.
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i was talking to josh brolin about this. he once witnessed john travolta helping marlon brando who had actually -- wasn't in a traffic accident, but he had stopped to help a motorist on the side of the road and cut his leg. they all show up at a dinner party and he's telling this story and using this dead-on brando accident. travolta said, i have gone to a higher level in the church and i think i can help you. and he said, well, if you have powers, john. he reached over and put his hand brando's leg and he said it was eerie. there was almost a physical charge between the two of them and brando said, you know what? i do feel better. so who is to say. in brando's mind, maybe he was making travolta feel okay about himself or maybe there was some sort of effect. but essentially it's a mystical idea, that you can lay on hands and you can make someone feel better. >> the church cites huge membership. millions and millions of people.
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other sources say that the number is actually much smaller in the tens of thousands. 25,000, 35,000, 45,000. is membership in decline? >> yes. it's hemorrhaging members. >> why? >> well, part of it i think is people becoming aware of what's going on inside of the church. moreover, the secret doctrines of the church it kept secret for years are now all over the internet. they are ridiculed on "south park." everyone kind of knows what the secrets are inside scientology and you don't have to pay a half million dollars to learn them. >> it's a fascinating book. thank you so much, lawrence. >> always a pleasure. >> lawrence wright. still ahead, the family of nfl star junior seau. is suing claiming the brain injury he got playing pro football caused his suicide. could their lawsuit be a game changer? also, it's cold out there. much colder in much of the country. can you say 33 below? it's not over yet. we'll explain why. ♪
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breaking news. the university of virginia's college is on lockdown after reports of an alleged gunman on campus. school officials are telling students to stay put and lock all doors till further notice. the liberal arts school is in the western part of the state about five hours from the main uva campus. let's get more details from you. joining me now is the editor in chief of the school's newspaper. the highland cavalier. thank you for joining us. i know officials are still saying to stay inside with the doors locked. what can you tell us about the situation right now? >> the latest information we have is that the school is on lockdown and police are searching for what they say is an alleged gunman. there are a lot of rumors but we haven't received any official reports other than that. >> all right. these report s of an alleged
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gunman, do you know when he was first allegedly seen on campus? what do we have of this time line, of what happened tonight? >> the first alert came out to students and staff about 9:32 p.m. it said, quote, hunker down, gunman on campus. and the police were centered around colbertson hall, which is a residential building, pretty small. all the buildings are pretty close. so they were searching that one building for a time. it eventually started moving on to other residential buildings. later -- >> all right -- >> go ahead. >> no, i'm sorry to interrupt, go ahead. >> later, another alert at about 10:09 came out and said lockdown continues, alleged gunman on campus, lock all doors till further notice. >> give us some insight into the type of response we're seeing from local and campus police. how big is it? >> well, in breaking news, the
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commonwealth's attorney for wise county, which is the county where wise is the center, just tweeted lockdown over, it was a hoax. i've not confirmed that yet. it's just from the commonwealth's attorney -- but as far as the response, our peace officers here. no ambulances on scene. just police officers from multiple agencies. >> i want to apologize to our viewers. we're having some technical problems. the line isn't exactly clear. i do want you to repeat what you just read. you read, if i heard you correctly, that a tweet has gone out saying that, lockdown is over, this was a hoax. just go through that again for our viewers who may be joining us right now. >> right. so there was reports here on the uva wise campus that there was
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an alleged gunman on campus. apparently that may not be accurate. this is per the twitter account of ron el kins who is the wise county commonwealth's attorney, where we're located, and he says on twitter, quote, lockdown over, it was a hoax, everyone's safe. i have not confirmed that yet. we haven't received word from the college that the lockdown is over. but that's the word from -- from the commonwealth's attorney on twitter. >> all right. jordan fife, editor and chief of the school's newspaper, thank you so much. we will be right back. as of right now, word we're getting, again, unconfirmed that that lockdown at the university of virginia's college at wise is over. unconfirmed at this point. after we got reports a short time ago that there was an alleged gunman on the loose. we'll be right back. d it. but there's one... one that's always eluded me.
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